As we move closer to the holidays the game information machine that is mass marketing starts to grind to a halt. While some games are quietly going into beta, others are simply being quiet with what they share to fans and media. Last week Eric Flannum, Lead Designer on Guild Wars 2, released a blog about why the game is sharing some information, but for the most is keeping quiet through the holidays. In Eric’s address to fans he paints a clear picture on what developers are up against when releasing a title with this much anticipation.
Guild Wars 2 is turning out to be an epic game any way you slice it. Fans of Guild Wars and MMO players overall have all turned an eye to this game as many of the theories and designs are taking MMOs into the next decade. When someone like Eric explains that the game will be out when it is done, you have to understand that this is to your benefit as a player. Keep in mind that Guild Wars 2 has been in the oven for three years. The team has been working hard for a long time. At this stage they are definitely more excited to talk about the project than ever. When ArenaNet opened the doors to the game and gave us all a playable demo, it is huge for the team. It gives them justification for all their hard work.
The fact that we have seen a strong demo, maps, zones, classes, and races, all appear over the last few months means things are on the right track. As much as I want to jump into the game and play, I don’t want to jump into a game that is not finished or thought out to the fullest extent. It is important to allow developers to develop. Many companies make the mistake of announcing their games too early and then forcing themselves into a schedule that they cannot hope to meet. The ability of ArenaNet to say that it will launch when ready is a very comforting concept, one that many games do not have.
MMOs are huge undertakings and back in 2005 when almost every major studio was making an MMO, no one anticipated the scope in which these games hold. The Guild Wars 2 team knows this and when they explain that they are working to get the game into players’ hands as fast as possible, I for one believe them. A game like this takes time, and rather than wait for a rushed product, we will all benefit from the time the team takes to create their world.
So while we wait for more news, I thought it might be fun to anticipate what the next Profession would be. Elemetalist, Warrior, Ranger, and Necromancer certainly cover a lot of ground in the archtype class area, but what is missing here? Some form of light melee class is my guess. Whether it is a rogue style or lightly armored fighter it is definitely an option that is missing from the list for now. There is no healing class to speak of which really opens some fun doors in terms of thinking what is next for the game. If you look closely at the shadows on the Professions page you might be able to make your own judgements.
As I close out this article I keep staring at the giant shadow on the Guild Wars 2 Professions page wondering what that might be, is it some form of ranged class with a cannon? I mean the Char have the lore to host a class like this. What is your impression of this hulking shadow? Please discuss I am curious what people think.
Guild Wars 2 continues to impress fans and MMO players alike with its design and theories. The game had a great playable demo this summer and offered great information for fans. Not only that, the team has done a good job of communicating the work that is being done and why the phrase “when it’s done” is so important. As we enter a quiet time of media for Guild Wars 2 I for one am happy that up in Seattle, a team is working hard, putting in hours on developing a game which we will all spend endless hours playing.